Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis will Help S.H.A.P.E. Community Center Officials Celebrate Improvements to Kitchen Used to Feed People in Need

WHAT: Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis will join S.H.A.P.E. Community Center in a re-opening celebration for its kitchen that was improved with funds from a $94,368 county grant secured by Commissioner Ellis. The kitchen will serve nutritional meals to adults and seniors. Commissioner Ellis, S.H.A.P.E. Executive Director Deloyd Parker and other community center officials will be served some “Beat the Heat” menu items prepared in the kitchen by Nedzra’s In-S.H.A.P.E. Café.

 WHO:  Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis

            Deloyd Parker, S.H.A.P.E. Community Center Executive Director

            Shondra Muhammad, S.H.A.P.E. Deputy Executive Director

             Nedzra Ward, Board President and Café Manager

 WHEN: Tuesday, June 7, 12:30 p.m.

 WHERE: S.H.A.P.E. Community Center, 3815 Live Oak St., Houston, TX 77004

VISUALS: Tour of improved kitchen; officials and community members enjoying dishes from Nedzra’s In-S.H.A.P.E. Café.

Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis will join S.H.A.P.E. Community Center officials in celebrating the completion of kitchen upgrades made possible by a $94,368 county grant Commissioner Ellis secured for the Third Ward facility.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has shed light on existing inequalities in our communities, including access to healthy, affordable food,” Commissioner Ellis said. “I’m pleased that we can assist S.H.A.P.E. to continuing its more than a half century mission of feeding children and adults, especially during this time when food prices are skyrocketing due to the nation’s highest inflation in four decades.”

The improvements coincide with S.H.A.P.E.’s 53rd Founders’ Day that will be celebrated this week as the community center moves forward with programs and services that continue to make a substantial contribution to the economic impact of the Third Ward community, said Shondra Muhammad, S.H.A.P.E.’s Deputy Executive Director.

The grant, approved by Commissioners Court in February, also allowed S.H.A.P.E. to purchase and install 15 laptop and 15 desktop computers in its Marcos Mazula Technology Center, which is named after longtime S.H.A.P.E. volunteer and children’s educational advocate who started the center’s first technology program.

“S.H.A.P.E. is truly grateful for the service opportunities that this grant funding brings to Third Ward,” Muhammad said.  “Additionally, the computer lab upgrades allow us to increase the enrollment of children into our new CAD (computer-aided design) and Robotics programs, which provide sustainable models, increasing the children’s higher education and career path opportunities.”

The grant funds will complement the services provided to S.H.A.P.E. by Houston Community College (HCC) and Siemens USA, who are introducing students to CAD software, 3D printing, and engineering pathways that are not always accessible to under-resourced communities.

“Computers and internet connectivity are no longer luxury items, but rather necessary tools to make sure our children can continue to learn,” Commissioner Ellis said. “Together, this is a public, private and nonprofit effort to close the digital divide. It takes a team effort to meet the community’s needs and improve the quality of life for people of all ages.”

For the kitchen, the funds were used to purchase new flooring, counter, refrigerator, stove and fryer so that S.H.A.P.E. can continue to provide meals weekly to children, adults and seniors.

“Upgrading our kitchen café expands our ability to serve the increasing number of people who are experiencing food insecurity, as we all recover from the effects of compounded disasters,” Muhammad said.  “Working with the emerging entrepreneurs in our Kitchen Incubator Program, we will be able to host a community kitchen designed to provide healthy, hot meals to those in need.”

Commissioner Ellis said food deserts are a chronic problem in our region, especially in low-income areas and communities of color.

“Access to healthy food is tied not only to key public health indicators, but to educational outcomes and job performance that help people lead healthy, productive lives,” Commissioner Ellis said. “It all starts with food security and access to healthy foods.”

October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit www.edwardsforhouston.com

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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